New North West Rally A True Family Event

This coming February, Burnie and Hellyer Gorge in North West Tasmania, will come alive to the sounds of a new tarmac rally event, with a waterfront finish line and celebrations at Burnie Bite and Brew.

Supported by Burnie City Council, the event to be known as the Hellyer North West Rally of Champions, will form a multi-stage tarmac rally event that is scheduled to be conducted on Saturday 27 February 2021.

Event Director, Stuart Benson, said: “From the outset we have designed this exciting event to provide both fierce closed road competition on the Murchison Highway, and a waterfront Burnie finish celebration that encourages everyone to come out and enjoy great local food, drinks and music.

“We wanted to offer something really special, not just a race” said the former Targa Tasmania event director.

“Providing a great social experience for the entire community is just as important as an exhilarating rally for entrants.”

During the single day of competition, drivers and navigators with their competition prepared cars will travel through seven closed road stages in a 150 kilometre tarmac trek.

The Hellyer North West Rally of Champions is expected to attract a field of at least 50 competition cars from around the country, and the local Maguire family has already signed-on three drivers for the challenge.

Two time and current Tasmanian Rally Champion, Eddie Maguire, is no stranger to Hellyer Gorge, having previously won a Targa event conducted on the same road.

“I’ve been fortunate enough to compete all over Australia and Hellyer Gorge is easily one of best sections of road this country has to offer for a tarmac rally,” said Maguire.

“To have such a technical and challenging road in my own backyard is just incredible and the atmosphere this new event will bring is an exciting opportunity for Burnie.”

Eddie and navigator Zak Brakey will compete in an exotic V10 powered Dodge Viper ACR that produces 650 horsepower, against talented younger brother Steve Maguire, who will drive a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X. Steve has enjoyed growing success in motorsport having finished first in two state championship rallies in recent months.

Not content sitting on the sidelines at age 74, Paul Maguire, father to Eddie and Steve, has decided that the North West Rally is the ideal opportunity to restart his own competitive driving career.

During the 1960s and 1970s, Paul was a successful rally and circuit racer, driving swift Ford Escorts and a Lotus Super 7. Aiming to compete in the speed-limited regularity competition come February, Paul will also drive a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X.

Mr Benson said that the event will be conducted in a COVID compliant manner and will stimulate visitation and economic growth to the city and region.

“Every possible precaution will be taken to keep competitors and the community safe, and I am confident that this event will be a much-welcomed addition to the North West calendar.”

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